Has the ERA Been Turned Into a Trojan Horse?


I'm a fan of the work of the Women's Liberation Front (or WoLF). Today they posted a very troubling analysis: apparently Men's Rights Activists are in complete support of the Equal Rights Amendment, which is to be voted on along with the Equality Act this week.

I am sure everyone is aware that Men's Rights Activists, or MRAs, are some of the worst, most virulent misogynists you will ever encounter. Their hatred for women is over the top: one of their heroes is Elliott Rogers, who penned a manifesto about how he wanted to lock all women up in concentration camps. This before he went out and shot several people to death. He went out hunting women and was going to shoot up an entire sorority, but they had the good sense to bar the door instead. Unfortunately, several women and men were kieed by Rogers.

So when WoLF argued that MRAs were backing the ERA, it didn't sound logical. But, alas, the ERA has fallen prey to the very same bait-and-switch as the Equality Act. Something proposed to help women is being weaponized as a Trojan horse against them.

Here's some of WoLF's analysis (I'll indicate when the quoted material ends):

"Men’s rights activists (“MRAs”) have asserted that a number of their policy goals would be served by the ratification of the ERA, but the most concerning to us are:

Family Law

* Strengthen the ability for men to sue for joint custody and/or visitation rights of a biological child conceived through rape;

* The concept of “financial abortion” whereby men could choose during the pregnancy to “opt out” of financial responsibility for the future child, born as a result of an unintended pregnancy, under the premise that Roe v. Wade would equally apply to men;

* Strengthening ability of men to force a pregnant woman to carry to term, on his word that he is the father;

Rape and Violence

* Treating sexual violence and domestic violence as a gender-neutral problem, including through funding and service availability;

* Rolling back enforcement of marital rape laws

Redressing Historical Exclusion and Discrimination

* Ending women-only scholarships;

* Prohibiting networking events and other opportunities for women in underrepresented industries (as has already been happening in states that have added strict scrutiny into their state constitutions).

"Trans activists see the ERA as the ‘holy grail’ of enshrining self-identification of sex in the law, which means that single-sex spaces and services would no longer exist.

"Some may think that courts will take the side of “common sense” and preserve sex-based rights for women and girls but, in reality, the judiciary is already captured. As discussed in our article on the post-ERA legal landscape, common sense has already left some of our courthouses. Our federal judges can no longer even be trusted to allow litigants to accurately describe the sex of the parties to a case. 

"Further, as noted in the history section, efforts to change the language of the amendment to protect women and girls have been repeatedly stymied, and courts will look to such events to determine legislative intent. Similarly, the last time the ERA was debated in Congress, there was testimony that specifically addressed “trans inclusion” and how the ERA would help gender identity advocates.

"The embrace of the Equal Rights Amendment by opponents of women’s sex-based rights is not a reason to reject it; but it is a reason to pause and reflect on their arguments.  We find their case persuasive. In bringing an end to intermediate scrutiny, the ERA would render women more vulnerable to sexual and reproductive exploitation, endanger services and resources that ensure equal opportunity, and put single-sex spaces in further jeopardy."

[End of quoted material.]

This analysis is fairly damning. Women's sex-based rights would be erased by an amendment purportedly aimed to ensure women's equality. Erasure is not equality. How heartbreakingly ironic that feminists such as WoLF now find themselves fighting the ERA.